Green Cleaning: The Eco-Friendly Way to a Sparkling Home
19 September 2019 | Admin
Now that the summer is coming to an end and the dark and cosy season is starting, we will be spending much more time indoors. It’s a great excuse to give the house a deep clean before getting out the fluffy socks and lighting the fire for the winter ahead.
Most cleaning cupboards nowadays are filled with bottles upon bottles of modern cleaning solutions. Many of which contain tons of chemicals - and while they do what it says on the tin - they leave traces of toxins and hazardous substances in your home, the environment and even on your skin and in your body.
Switching to eco-friendly cleaning products might seem daunting at first. Especially, when you have been using the same tried and tested brands for years and know they work. Read on to find out why it is worth your while changing your cleaning routine to a greener one, and find out which eco cleaning products and solutions will get you started on your way to a greener cleaner home!
Why Choose Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products?
1. Less chemicals
When you pick up common toilet or floor cleaner in the supermarket you will find a warning label for hazardous substances on the back of most bottles. This is due to toxic chemicals that can potentially cause harm to you, your family, your home and the environment. Typical cleaning chemicals include Triclosan, Butoxyethanol, Sodium Hydroxide, Chlorine and more. Some of these have been linked to chronic respiratory diseases such as asthma and bronchitis as well as other health issues and acute skin reactions like rashes or in some cases even chemical burns and cancer. In fact a study by the University of Bergen in Norway has found that the regular use of chemical cleaning products has a similar effect on your body as smoking.
These chemicals are not just harmful in the moment they are used, but also pollute the environment on an ongoing basis. Many of those toxins are found in the air, especially in urban areas with a large population. Mixed with water these hazardous substances are introduced into our oceans, rivers and lakes where they are not just posing a serious threat to animals and marine life but also make their way into our food.
Choosing eco-friendly chemical-free cleaning products will give our planet a chance to recover over time and create a healthier environment for all of us!
2. Budget friendly
Why spend lots of money on cleaning products that cause harm to yourself and the environment, when in many cases you can use what you already have at home to effectively clean your house? In recent years, DIY cleaning products have become more mainstream and people are sharing their recipes online for others to try so it's really easy to find what you're looking for with a quick search. Common ingredients are bicarbonate of soda, lemon juice or vinegar and while you need to spend the time to prepare your cleaner and might need a short trial and error period until you have your mixture perfected, you don’t have to invest too much money.
Even if making your own is not for you or you just don’t have the time, you can still save money by buying eco-friendly cleaning products in bulk. A 5 Litre container of toilet cleaner or 15 Litres of washing up liquid are a lot more cost effective than buying lots of small bottles or packs. Also, check out your local health food store or market, as more and more places now offer refill stations so you can bring your own containers and fill them with whatever cleaning product you need – saving money and packaging!
How to Get Your Green Cleaning Routine Started
1. Stock Taking
Before you have a look at green cleaning products or recipes for DIY cleaners, you need to figure out what kind of products you are using regularly, how they work for you and how much you have left of each.
Go through your cleaning cupboard to identify your go-to cleaners and the products that you once bought but never really used. Even though it is tempting to throw them all out in one go and replace with an entire range of green cleaning products – don’t! You have them now, the energy to produce them was already spent. When you throw them out, they will leach their chemicals in the environment anyway, so you might as well put them to their intended use before that happens. Unless you have serious health concerns over your existing cleaning products it is best to use up what you have and pass on what you don’t need, before sourcing eco-friendly alternatives.
2. To DIY or not to DIY
As you come to the end of one bottle you can start looking for a green alternative. If you decide to give some DIY recipes a go it might be useful to invest in a good & compostable scrub sponge and a plastic-free washing brush to get the most out of your homemade products.
Even though you are able to buy most of the ingredients for DIY cleaners in your regular supermarket, you might have to source things like pure alcohol or washing soda in a chemist or healthfood shop. Don’t be disappointed if your first mixture is not working as well as you hoped. The good thing about homemade cleaning products is that you can alter them in exactly the way you need them. Don’t be afraid to change the ratios a small bit and allow for a bit of trial and error until you are happy with the result!
3. Eco Cleaning Essentials
If DIY is not for you, you have the choice of many eco-friendly but incredibly effective cleaning products for your entire house. From bleach-free toilet cleaner, kettle descaler and drain unblocker right up to your every-day all-purpose spray cleaner and window cleaning spray. Looking at the extensive green cleaning ranges available from brands like Method, Ecover or Bio D and new brands including Ecoleaf and Marcel’s, there really is no need to rely on chemicals in order to get your house sparkling.
In addition to swapping your cleaning products, you can also get eco-friendly alternatives for your cleaning equipment; like the scrub pad and brush mentioned above. For cleaning any type of surfaces you can’t beat Ecloths - the material is naturally antibacterial, which means you are getting rid of 99% of all bacteria just by using this cloth and water!
While protecting your hands might seem unnecessary when cleaning with non-toxic substances, you might still want to avoid excess water causing dry and scaly skin. Ditch your rubber gloves and get some compostable household gloves instead. At the end of their life, they can go in the brown bin and won’t end up in landfill!
Green Cleaning: For Your Health & The Planet
Like any other change you are looking to make in your life, the switch to green cleaning products might seem overwhelming at first. After all, it is a step from a known routine towards something you haven’t tried before and that can be daunting.
However, once you have found or made the products that work for you, you will never look back. Cleaning in a more sustainable and eco-friendly way will not just make you feel like you are actually making a difference to our environment but will also leave your home feeling even cleaner and healthier!
If you asked us to pick just three of our range that we think you will love and never want to change, it would be the Memo Dishwasher Brush, the Method Pink Grapefruit All Purpose Cleaner and the Ecoleaf Dishwasher Tablets.
Let us know if you love them too!
Have you ventured into the world of eco-friendly cleaning yet? Tell us your top tip?